It means the process of developing or moving gradually towards a more advanced state. Who didn’t we see progressing yesterday?!

Yesterday was one of those days that affirms how awesome a group we have become. We as a group have progressed beyond whatever I could have possibly imagined. The progression we saw today though, wasn’t just about faster times, it was micro achievements from everyone. Major corners turned from a lot of you. Huge progression from all of you.

Me and Rebecca were talking about how this felt on our drive home, but Kelly beat us to it, as mentioned in one of her comments on Facebook:

“The cheering from everyone was immense even to people we didn’t know at the end!

I’m so proud to wear my runpals vest and my crazy leggings and be part of such a wonderfabulous Family - they say you can’t choose family but I definitely have!”

And I think Family summed up the attitude out there best of all. Everyone was cheering, high fiving, dancing and certainly looked like they were having fun, despite having to run up dukes mound 2,4 or 7 times! I mean, who puts a hill like that in the middle of a “fun run”?! 😉

But back to progression, there were a few things that stood out for me today. And it wasn’t only at the music Run. Seeing people like Zingisa and Gary do the track marathon (you mentalists!), Dan claiming victory after completing another RatRace and Shelley tackling Uckfields undulating off road parkrun and Allison achieving yet another PB today at parkrun is just epic. Everyone had their own little event today.

But alas, I was at the music run and what I saw was amazingness and positive change from everyone.

It’s going to be impossible to mention everyone, as with over 45 pals taking part in today’s Run2Music, it would take not only all day to write it up, but it would turn into a little epic tale itself and I don’t want to miss someone unintentionally, so, I’m going to talk about family and what they achieved today as I think their success, is shared in all of our achievements today.

But first, to Hayley - it’s fair to say i think you were pretty nervous before you had to go on stage for the first time in a while to warm us all up, but pal, you smashed it, well done! We’re proud of you and your dancing comeback!

Gah, I want to right about everything I witnessed today, I’m already off track about family and I haven’t really even started... it’s almost impossible to get it all down onto paper. Can you tell I’m feeling proud?

Moving ever so slightly on from my family, let’s see where this goes.

The new mommas.

Not first time mommas, but Ria, Jenny and Bex have all given birth at some point over the last four months and seeing them all pushing themselves and the little ones up and down dukes mound was admirable. I don’t know how you ladies do it, but you did, and I’m in awe of what you’ve achieved. For my Bex, when she said that Des’ cheering was spurring her to want to run, and feeling ready to run again, and even wanting to run again, I knew she’d turned a massive corner since baby T joined us in this world, and is ready to get out there with us all running more regularly. Thanks Des for the encouragement as always pal!

I can see the same in Jenny, running with her double buggy, with a big smile on her face. It is awesome to see our good pal back out running again.

And Ria, not many people would be able to do what you did today pal. You inspire us all more than you’ll ever believe! Thank you.

So, following the momma theme, there were some other great momma milestones today. I’ll try to be brief...

Kat and Half pint were smashing it today. Boyo got his mojo back and even tried to chase us down at one point! Well done momma for being persistent and keeping him going. We can’t wait to run wjth you both again soon.

Kelly and Laura, the kid sweepers of the group today, kept our awesome minipals going, walking and jogging with them all the way to the finish. There are many a mini story within this group alone today too, but to not miss one, I’ll share my boys progress, further on in this tale.

Olivia, I’m sorry, but when did you learn to fly with the buggy? We caught you literally flying today. You have become an incredibly strong runner pal!

Raquel and kids... your outfits were epic and we reckon the class bear had the most fun around the course today! It was great that Seb could unleash a bit and join us for the 10!

Naomi has been telling us that she recently lost her mojo a bit for running and has only completed a few runs since “coming back” so to see her tackling this course with Carrie in tow was truly awesome. You should be proud of Bethany for getting Elsa over the line and the quick feet of Alyssa, taking in second place!

I feel like I can keep writing forever... I’ll try to finish with tales from family from now.

We weren’t sure if Ace was going to a) stay in the buggy with me, b) want to run himself or c) put his foot down to want to go with momma, so we prepared for all occasions. The little legend stayed put however and with the help of Jon, Leigh and Adam we got him up and down the mound four times and achieved our quickest buggy event 10k. Not only that, as a relative late comer to buggy running (our first was the music Run last year!), its the first 10k that he’s stayed put for the duration. I’m so proud of him for taking it all in and helping us to get it done.

Then, to my eldest boy Bro. As many of you know, he gets very anxious about big events, or people cheering him on. He can find it quite overwhelming and often doesn’t want to leave my side. But, he overcame a huge hurdle today. He didn’t run with either of us. He ditched mom and ran with his pals and was smiling all the way. I can’t tell you how much progress he has made in the last weeks with his anxiety and his running. I can honestly say I’m certain his progression is down to the amazing support of his mates he ran with today, the support you all share, the high fives, the cheers and the phenomenal encouragement. How could you not overcome your demons with pals like you around the course?

After the run he said “can we do adult parkrun now daddy?” Yes boyo, yes we can! I’m am so proud.

And my gorgeous Theia. Ok so clearly she’s not mine, but wow. This girl is a machine. A little bit of a late start, in that she wanted to ditch her buggy and run instead... so there was some last minute parenting skills put to the test, but, she was unleashed to run her own way.

What we didn’t realise was quite how much she wanted to run the whole course, on her own. She was smashing it. We saw her taking off from her momma down Dukes Mound. Jon turned to help take over to shouts of “I want to run on my own daddy!” Much like her leggings, she was definitely Mrs Strong today!

How do I summarise this?

I am so incredibly proud to wear our RunPals name on my back. Everything we stand for, you lot emit in wonderfabulous splendour every time we run apart or together. There are more of you than I could possibly mention on here, about the progress you have made, but I’m in awe of every single one of you.

I can’t wait to the next one... 5.30 Run I believe? Let’s get on it pals - we’ll be seeing you soon!

Matt Coyne